Hanover likes plan for more ball fields

Reviews senior housing plan

The Hanover City Council continued discussion about a plan to add a new city park and ball fields, as well as making a main attraction field at Settlers Park.

The council also was updated about a plan for senior housing, and heard about an effort to locate Wright County’s River Rider public transportation into Hanover and northeast Wright County.



The council heard from the Hanover Athletic Association and from amateur softball commissioner Dan Pfeffer.

They showed a layout and concept plan for the 10-acre city site located just east of the fire hall. This site was considered for potential commercial/industrial development but was deemed more suitable for a park due to soil correction needs. The city and athletic association were thus brainstorming what a park might look like at the site.

Pfeffer said there would be two fields, some parking and potential cold storage space for the public works department. Another concept is to turn the two fields at Settlers Park into one field.

“They would want that field to be a main stage for championship games,” administrative assistant Brian Hagen later said. “(Pfeffer) said if we have a good setup, the new field could draw softball tournaments.”

The new park fields would be set up for baseball, softball, youth soccer and lacrosse. “We think this can be a great thing for the city and make us more of a destination spot for games,” Hagen said. “The city council said go ahead and let’s get some plans that are going to work and we’ll move forward from there.”

He said the next step is for the athletic association to turn in a final concept plan.



In other news, the council reviewed a sketch plan for senior housing at the Bridges in Hanover on the city’s Hennepin County side.

This would be for a proposed assisted living project.

“The council sent the plan to the planning commission for recommendations,” administrative assistant Hagen said. “The biggest concern is driveway location and emergency vehicle access. We’ll be making small changes with the city planner and then going forward.”

Construction is possible next year. Initial plans are to start with one building, with potential for expansion into two buildings.

“The council said, ‘Yep, let’s keep this moving.’ ”



In further matters, the council heard about a plan to expand Wright County’s River Rider public transportation program into Hanover, St. Michael, Albertville and Otsego.

It would be for a three-year pilot program for the four cities. Transportation would be available once per week at a set number of hours.

“The main focus is to provide transportation for seniors,” administrative assistant Hagen said. “But anyone can ride it, and it’s reasonable priced.”

The city’s cost would be determined on a per population ratio. The council was supportive of the concept.

Hanover Economic Development Authority (EDA) member Jim Hennessy is spearheading the effort for Hanover, and the council authorized him to represent the city and talk details, along with city clerk/assistant administrator Annita Smythe.

A meeting with the other cities is planned for Friday, July 12.